Labour Market Information
As the world changes, understanding the job market on a local, national and international level is becoming more important to those planning their future careers. Labour Market Information or ‘LMI’ is the term used to describe any quantitative or qualitative data about the nature and operation of the labour market. LMI can be ‘Hard LMI’ which is quantitative information that is the result of rigorous research methodology i.e. from government sponsored surveys such as Census and labour force surveys (these give an overview of where people in the UK are employed, it shows for example, the percentage of people in employment, percentage out of work but looking for a job and also other categories such as students and those unable to work due to illness. It also shows the sectors that people work in so you could do a search on how many people work in the hospitality sector in any given location) ‘Soft LMI’, refers to information that has come from other sources such as information from employers, newspaper articles, local knowledge and that from professional networks and sector skills organisations.
Labour Market Information provides the knowledge and understanding of how the labour market functions and so is crucial for making sense of changing economic circumstances. Advisers interpret and use this ‘labour market intelligence’ with clients so that it is taken into account when thinking about what the future might hold. For example, advisers could use this information to discuss how many jobs are in a particular sector and whether a specific area of work is growing in the number of jobs available or declining, they may also be able to tell you what sort of salary you might expect to be paid and what the opportunities are for career development and progression. Hopefully you can see how this can really support career decision making.
Case Study – Recently when helping Louise, a 19 years old client, look for retail work, the adviser discussed with the client the impact of the Covid pandemic on the local economy and found that recently there has been a marked decrease in retail vacancies (and an increase in redundancies in this sector), this helped her make a more informed decision about her immediate future.
LMI comes from a range of sources and includes:
information on general employment trends
(unemployment rates; skills gaps; future demand)
data on the structure of the labour market
(what jobs exist, how many, which sectors)
information about the way the labour market functions
(how people get into jobs & move between employers)
data focusing on equality and diversity
(which individuals are employed in different sectors and at what levels?)